Gentoo Archives: gentoo-project

From: Ulrich Mueller <ulm@g.o>
To: NP-Hardass <NP-Hardass@g.o>
Cc: gentoo-project@l.g.o
Subject: Re: [gentoo-project] [RFC] GLEP 76: Copyright Policy
Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2018 17:28:00
Message-Id: 23326.45334.989265.824533@a1i15.kph.uni-mainz.de
In Reply to: Re: [gentoo-project] [RFC] GLEP 76: Copyright Policy by NP-Hardass
>>>>> On Mon, 11 Jun 2018, NP-Hardass wrote:
> On 06/10/2018 04:34 PM, Ulrich Mueller wrote: > [...]
>> Copyright Attribution >> --------------------- >> >> All files included in Gentoo projects must contain an appropriate >> copyright notice, as defined by this policy. >> >> A proper copyright notice appears near the top of the file, and reads:: >> >> Copyright YEARS LARGEST-CONTRIBUTOR [OTHER-CONTRIBUTORS] and others >> >> The largest contributor is whatever entity owns copyright to some >> portion of the largest number of lines in the file. Additional >> contributors can be listed, but this is neither required nor >> recommended. The "and others" text may be omitted if the explicitly >> listed contributors hold copyright to the entire file.
> Why is this not recommended? Here are a couple of scenarios that came to > mind that lead to me to question how that would play out: > If developer A writes 51% of the lines of an ebuild and developer B > writes 49%, should B not be listed?
With the current policy neither of them is listed, so listing A would be an improvement. The goal is to keep things simple, and listing only the largest contributor looks like the simplest solution. For example, listing the two largest contributors would lead to similar problems. What should we do if A and B each write 34% and C writes 32%? In a previous version of the draft, we had required a full list of copyright holders to be listed somewhere in the file, and 60% of the lines to be accounted for: https://gitweb.gentoo.org/data/glep.git/commit/?id=bb756839bbd403059f6faeceaa114346d2a840d7 We changed that because neither tracing the number of lines nor maintaining a list of authors in every ebuild seems feasible.
> What if all the metadata lines defining variables consists of 75% of the > file and was written by A, but the core functionality of the ebuild (25% > by size) was written by B?
That would get us into a discussion on which portions of an ebuild are copyrightable and which are not. Again, we want simple rules there.
> If A writes an ebuild, and B replaces a majority (>50%) of the ebuild, > should B remove A from attribution? > I think that specifying that substantial (though not necessarily > specific in defining this) contributions/contributors should included in > the copyright attribution and that substantial contribution attribution > *is* recommended.
See above. Explicitly listing only one copyright holder in the copyright line looks like the simplest possible solution. Listing nobody would be even simpler, but I think that you cannot have a copyright line without at least one entity. Also note that the exercise is _not_ about giving credit to authors (and we currently don't do that with the Foundation copyright either). The purpose of the copyright notice is to make a statement that the work is copyrighted, in order to defeat a possible defense of "innocent infringement". Ulrich

Replies

Subject Author
Re: [gentoo-project] [RFC] GLEP 76: Copyright Policy NP-Hardass <NP-Hardass@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-project] [RFC] GLEP 76: Copyright Policy Ulrich Mueller <ulm@g.o>